After stepping off the plane 5 years ago with hair rivaling Beyonce’s, Carmen Kot, founder of online store SurviveSG was determined to try every product under the hot Singapore sun (she even tried washing her hair with Evian water!) to combat her unwanted hair frizz. After years of trying countless products and treatments, and discussing frizz-free strategies with her girlfriends, Carmen’s sharing her knowledge with Sassy Mama… so that all mamas can enjoy frizz-free hair too!
Carmen’s Top Tips for Fighting the Hair Frizz in Singapore
First up, why do we even get frizz?
It’s a simple equation really… dry hair = frizzy hair. This is because humidity is, quite simply, water in the air in vapor form. When we walk outside, the water vapor in the air is attracted to dryness. Hair will naturally absorb and give off water throughout the day, which breaks the molecule bonds in our hair causing the dreaded frizz.
Tip 1: Keep your hair moisturized
Simple but true. Keeping your hair well moisturized means humidity will have less impact on your hair. If you have serious frizz issues, you should consider using conditioner every day, but only shampoo hair sparingly. Washing your mane too often strips it of the naturally moisturizing oils produced by the scalp.
Buying sulfate-free haircare often helps and means you won’t be stripping away the natural oils in your hair and scalp every time you wash. As these products do not contain surfactants, they slightly coat the hair, adding a tiny bit of weight to your luscious locks. Trust us… this is a good thing for fighting the frizz!
Carmen recommends the use of organic and sulfate-free products like Intelligent Nutrients Harmonics Shampoo & Conditioner to wash your hair. With a light creamy consistency, it leaves your hair moisturized and well nourished without weighing it down too much. It also pays to consider using a conditioning hair mask once a fortnight (or even once a month) to deeply nourish your tresses. The Original Mineral 7 Day Miracle Moisture Mask is a fave product, as it only needs 2 minutes to work – perfect for busy mamas!
Tip 2: Use products that are hydrophobic, that is, water-repelling
Serums in general are perfect to use in humid weather because you can use them on dry hair for quick touch-ups and then keep touching up as the day goes by.
While it’s obviously preferable to suggest serums that are 100% natural, from experience, natural oils alone are generally too heavy for most hair types and weigh the hair down and make it greasy. Silicones (they repel water) combined with natural oils are much lighter — dimethicone and cyclopentasiloxane are great frizz fighters and are very effective at preventing humidity from penetrating the cuticle, all without weighing down the hair. Original Mineral Frizzy Logic serum is a great product as it not only contains those much required silicones, it also has the right amount of organic Argan and Macadamia nut oils to create a lightweight serum that protects the hair and fights the frizz!
Tip 3: Get the right cut
Many women become so frustrated with the frizz that they cut their hair short to remove some bulk. Unfortunately it’s a big mistake. Shorter hair is even more difficult to manage! Long hair and straight cuts add the weight needed to pull down hair that would otherwise puff out.
Generally the rule is the frizzier your hair, the longer your cut should be (at least past your shoulders if possible). It will depend on your hair type as to whether you have layers or not, however generally speaking wavy or curly hair looks great with layers.
Tip 4: Dry hair gently
If your hair is prone to fly-aways and frizziness, carefully blot your hair dry with a towel instead of rubbing it like crazy. Blow-drying your locks also saps hair of moisture and greatly increases the amount of frizz.
If you must blow your hair dry, avoid a lot of movement with the blow dryer and try to use a dryer that is ionic. Dry your hair slowly and in small sections, remembering to blow down the hair shaft instead of across it, or dry upwards if you want a bit of volume and lift. Do note however that it can add a bit of puffiness to frizzy hair!
If you find your hair is prone to knotting, instead of attacking it with your brush, spray a light detangler spray such as O&M Know Knott Conditioning Detangler onto your tresses. This does all the hard work for you, removing knots, and making it easier for you to brush through with ease (you never want to break the hair strands mama as it only creates fly aways and more frizz!).
Tip 5: Style your hair according to your natural hair type
In humid weather, you hair will tend to do what it naturally wants to do. Fighting your hair type will cause you a lot of frustration, and you will end up losing every time. If your hair is straight, avoid the urge to put it in curlers. If your hair is naturally curly or wavy, work with the waves instead of opting for a straight style.
Finally, bobby pins and hairbands are your new best friends! Take advantage of the extra volume you get in the humidity to pin hair artfully off your face and neck. And if it really is a bad hair day (and we all have these!) consider wearing a cloth hair band to cover up the frizz and tie hair up in a high bun instead.
Carmen Kot has lived in Singapore for 5 years and has spent much of this time searching for the right products to help her deal with Singapore’s tropical climate. After many years of testing and listening to others Carmen launched online store, surviveSG.com. Selling all manner of well-loved tried and tested products, Carmen’s selections help solve common humidity-induced problems including frizzy hair, safe anti-mosquito products (that are DEET free and actually work!), and cosmetics that stand up to humidity. Image of Carmen courtesy of Melissa Bailey.